Bare-Root Autumn Bliss
I highly recommend all raspberries but in particular Autumn Bliss for its intense flavour and ease of management. Bare root plants are still available and a couple of rows will produce fruit from August through to October. My maintenance method is to cut one row back to ground level in December and at the same time I cut the second row to 50 cms. The latter will be the first to fruit and both will give a succession of berries for many weeks. Raspberries store well in the freezer – these came out last weekend and are de-frosting in case you think it’s mould and there’s a similar quantity still to enjoy.
I saved these seeds of Lunaria -Honesty- late summer and sowed them in October under glass. They germinated fast and the small plants have been growing steadily in the propagator outside throughout the icy weather. It’s a favourite biennial useful for the back of shady borders and is a very lovely cut flower staying fresh in a vase for many days. These seedlings will be planted in the ground in April but as biennials they won’t flower till the following year.
The Bee-Kind Garden available from http://www.greenbooks.co.uk is a delightfully illustrated book that pays homage to bees and their vital pollination skills. The chapters include Getting to Know Bees, and Attracting Bees to your garden or allotment and even Talking to Bees. There’s sound advice on bee keeping with advice on hives for today’s bees and throughout essential reminders of the need to protect and encourage bees.
In 48 hours the European Union could move to ban the most poisonous pesticides so there’s an urgent need to sign this petition: http://www.avaaz.org/en/hours_to_save_the_bees/?bBixnab&v=21421
Four countries have already banned these substances with a marked increase in bee populations as a result.